Chicken Shawarma with Two Sauces


You can make either of these traditional sauces, as they’re both perfect with this sandwich (but usually not at the same time…)


The Marinade

2 teaspoons ground coriander

2 teaspoons ground cumin

2 teaspoons ground cardamon

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 tsp smoked paprika (optional)

2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced

2 tablespoons lemon juice

3 tablespoons olive oil



2 pounds chicken thighs, skinless and boneless


Yogurt Sauce

1 cup Greek yogurt

1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed

½ teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon lemon juice


Tahini Sauce

½ cup tahini, well stirred

¼ cup lemon juice (approximately 2 lemons), more to taste

½ teaspoon ground cumin

1 garlic clove


For Serving

4 – 5 flatbreads (Lebanese flatbread, pita bread or even tacos)


chopped tomato

red onion, peeled and finely minced

  • In a bowl, whisk together the coriander, cumin, cardamom, cinnamon, and smoked paprika. Whisk in the garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil, with sprinkles of salt and pepper. Add in the chicken, and thoroughly mix it well with the marinade. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 3-10 hours

While the chicken is marinating, you can make either sauce. Or both! You can do this up to a day ahead


Yogurt Sauce

  • Whisk together all of the yogurt sauce ingredients in a bowl. Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to use


Tahini Sauce

In a bowl, whisk together the tahini, lemon juice, cumin, garlic, a sprinkle of salt and pepper, and approximately ¼ cup of t water until the sauce is smooth and well-combined. More water may be needed to get a flowing consistency. Refrigerate until ready to use


For the Chicken

Preheat a grill pan, heavy skillet or a barbecue grill to a medium-high heat


  1. Carefully place the chicken in the skillet or on the grill, and cook the first side for 4 to 5 minutes until nicely charred. Turn and cook the other side for 3 to 4 minutes. Cook until the chicken is cooked through. Remove chicken from the skillet or grill, and cover loosely with foil. Set aside to rest for 5 minutes


The Sandwich

  1. Cut the chicken into thin strips
  2. In the center of the flatbread, layer the lettuce, chicken, tomatoes, onion, and add the sauce of your choice. Roll up the sandwich, and serve with saffron rice, or your choice of side dish